Another UFC event is in the books and that means that the BE crew of Steph, Fraser, Tim, and TP had another chance to represent the community by ranking the fighters. Chris was absent from the rankings this time, I'm not sure if that's permanent or not. This time, I thought it would be fun to examine the Middleweight division, given the implications of the title recently changing hands, Munoz's return to form, Souza's big win over Okami, and Francis Carmont's dominance of Costas.
As usual, I will compare their rankings to each other as well as to the overall UFC averages. I will also lay out supporting data regarding wins and losses for each of the top 10 fighters. Basically, it's the type of analysis I would do if I were selected to be one of the few who get to determine the official UFC rankings.
The BE Staff Individual Rankings
|C||Chris Weidman||C||Chris Weidman||C||Chris Weidman||C||Chris Weidman|
|1||Anderson Silva||1||Anderson Silva||1||Anderson Silva||1||Anderson Silva|
|2||Vitor Belfort||2||Vitor Belfort||2||Vitor Belfort||2||Vitor Belfort|
|3||Ronaldo Souza||3||Ronaldo Souza||3||Ronaldo Souza||3||Ronaldo Souza|
|4||Michael Bisping||4||Mark Munoz||4||Michael Bisping||4||Michael Bisping|
|5||Yushin Okami||5||Michael Bisping||5||Mark Munoz||5||Mark Munoz|
|6||Mark Munoz||6||Yushin Okami||6||Yushin Okami||6||Luke Rockhold|
|7||Luke Rockhold||7||Luke Rockhold||7||Luke Rockhold||7||Francis Carmont|
|8||Chael Sonnen||8||Francis Carmont||8||Francis Carmont||8||Yushin Okami|
|9||Francis Carmont||9||Costa Philippou||9||Costa Philippou||9||Tim Boetsch|
|10||Costa Philippou||10||Tim Boetsch||10||Chael Sonnen||10||Costa Philippou|
The top 3 are consistently viewed as Anderson, Belfort, and Souza. And, it would have been the top 4 if not for Fraser's flip flopping of Munoz and Bisping. From number 5 on down, things vary a little bit amongst the BE rankers. Carmont, fresh off his win over Philippou, is ranked 9th, 8th twice, and 7th. Chael Sonnen appears on two of the rankers lists at 8th and 10th. Boetsch appears on the other two rankers lists at 10th and 9th.
BE Staff Average Rankings Compared to the Overall UFC Rankings
|C||Chris Weidman||C||Chris Weidman|
|1||Anderson Silva||1||Anderson Silva|
|2||Vitor Belfort||2||Vitor Belfort|
|3||Ronald Souza||3||Ronaldo Souza|
|4.25||Michael Bisping||4||Michael Bisping|
|5||Mark Munoz||5||Mark Munoz|
|6.25||Yushin Okami||6||Yushin Okami|
|7||Luke Rockhold||7||Luke Rockhold|
|8||Francis Carmont||8||Francis Carmont|
|9.5||Costa Philippou||9||Costa Philippou|
|10||Chael Sonnen||10||Chael Sonnen|
The BE rankings match up exactly to the Overall UFC rankings. The things that jump out at me are Munoz over Okami despite Okami's win in the head to head match up, Chael Sonnen's presence in the rankings, but only in the 10 spot, and Costa Philippou's continued presence in the top 10 despite being dominated by an unranked fighter in Carmont.
|#||Name||Record||Top 10 Wins||ZUFFA||Other Notable Wins||Other Notable Losses|
|1||Anderson Silva||33-5||Sonnen (x2), Okami, Belfort||19-3||Maia, Griffin, Henderson, Franklin (x2), Horn, Newton, Sakurai||Weidman, Chonan, Okami (DQ)|
|2||Vitor Belfort||23-10||Rockhold, Bisping||17-10||Franklin, Lindland, Couture, Herring, Yvel, Wandy||Couture (x2), Sakuraka, Liddell, Ortiz, Overeem (x2), Henderson, Jones|
|3||Ronald Souza||19-3||Okami||9-1||Lawler, Kennedy, Lindland, Mayhem||Gegard Mousasi|
|4||Michael Bisping||24-5||N/A||14-5||Belcher, Stann, Mayhem, Kang, Leben||Wandy, Henderson, Evans|
|5||Mark Munoz||13-3||Boetsch||10-3||Leben, Maia, Pierce||Hamill, Weidman|
|6||Yushin Okami||29-8||Munoz, Silva (DQ)||13-5||Lombard, Belcher (x2), Marquardt, Lister, Tanner, Swick, Sakurai||Shields, Franklin|
|7||Luke Rockhold||10-2||Souza||9-1||Kennedy, Jardine||Rubalcava|
|8||Francis Carmont||22-7||Philippou||6-0||Larkin, Lawlor, Camozzi||Vianna, Santos, Agaev|
|9||Costa Philippou||12-3||Boetsch||5-2||Fukuda, McGee, Rivera, Hall||Romero, Catone|
|10||Chael Sonnen||28-13||Bisping, Okami||10-7||Rua, Stann, Marquardt, Miller, Filho, Mayhem||Jon Jones, Maia, Filho, Horn (x3), Sobral, Martin, Griffin|
|11||Tim Boetsch||16-6||Okami||7-5||Lombard||Janitor, Hamil, Brilz, Phil Davis|
The fighter with the most wins over currently ranked competition is Anderson Silva with 4. The only other fighters on the list with more than 1 win over currently ranked fighters (excluding Okami's DQ of Silva) are Vitor Belfort and Chael Sonnen. Probably the most impressive list of Other Notable wins belongs to Okami who has victories over Lombard, Belcher (twice), Nate Marquardt, Dean Lister, Evan Tanner, Mike Swick, and Sakurai. In the loss column it's interesting to note that Boetsch really struggled in the LHW division against tougher opponents, as did Sonnen early in his career. It's also interesting to note the list of lesser known fighters on Carmont's notable loss list. Granted, these fights were years ago, early in his career. Lastly, it's important to reconize that Bisping has not beaten a single person on the current top 10 list. He has, however, lost to Sonnen and Belfort.
Ranking the Rankers
In evaluating the BE crew, I have to recognize Steph's list as the most justifiable rankings of the group. Bisping might be a little high given his lack of top 10 wins, but he's been otherwise successful, making him the hardest fighter to rank on the list. I really like Okami ranked ahead of Munoz given Okami's superior track record, strength of schedule, and his win in the head to head match up. Steph also dares to rank Chael Sonnen higher than the others. I say, if you are going to ranking him at all, put him up at #3 behind Belfort. He's earned it. And, it is in the rules that you can rank fighters in multiple weight classes, so why not? Francis Carmont's entry into the top 10 is much more appropriate at #9, given that Costas is his first really convincing win (i.e. I scored Carmont's last fight for Larkin and the Lawlor fight was not impressive either).
As far as the most head scratching rankings, that would have to go to T.P. I'm not opposed to Luke Rockhold being a little higher in the rankings, especially now that his win over Souza is looking even more impressive. However, Carmont at #7 just because of a single big win over Costas (who himself is really only in the top 10 because of a close victory over an injured Boetsch), ahead of a proven guy like Okami doesn't make much sense to me. Also, Boetsch is ranked ahead of Costas despite the results of their head to head match up and Boetsch's recent lost to Munoz.
I look forward to hearing from the rankers in the comments.
Previous "Rank the Rankers" Fanposts